Manchester United will be travelling down the south coast this weekend, as they go up against Southampton for their first away match of the 21-22 Premier League season. The Red Devils currently sit on top of the table after an impressive 5-1 win over Leeds last week.
Although this position may not matter much as the season has just started, United will be hoping to win again and further build up momentum to secure the spot. The focus is now on the game against the Saints. Here is the predicted lineup for the Southampton vs Manchester United game:
David de Gea is most likely to hold his spot between the sticks as Henderson is still recovering from COVID-19 and is working on regaining his fitness. The Spaniard had a forgettable performance last season, which brought doubts over his starting role. However, he made a good start this season, even coming close to securing a clean sheet against Leeds
The fans can’t wait to see Varane pair up with Maguire at the back, but Ole is expected to field the familiar pairing of Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire again this week. The pair was impressive in the last game but Varane is certainly an upgrade to Lindelof. However, Varane has just completed his first week of training and may not be completely ready with match fitness.
On the flanks, Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw are certain to retain their roles after successful performances last week. Luke Shaw in particular will be looking to continue his hot run of form we saw at the end of last season and during the Euro 2020 for England.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) August 21, 2021
Ole had mentioned before the start of the season about his desire to play a 4-3-3 system with a single pivot in midfield. However, for now, the duo of Fred and Scott McTominay will most likely play their double pivot roles in midfield as Rashford is still out with injury, forcing Pogba to play on the left. Fred has made a commendable start to the season, with a goal against Leeds and another during United’s recent friendly against Burnley on Tuesday which was played behind closed doors.
Going up front in attack is the undisputed star man Bruno Fernandes, who has yet again proved his importance to the team last weekend. Fernandes scored a brilliant hat-trick for United against Leeds, as the Reds started the season in fine fashion.
United have exciting depth for the forward roles this season, with a great list of players at Ole’s disposal. Amad Diallo and Cavani are both back in training and Sancho has already completed his second week of training with the club. Last season, the club were accused of playing down the left on far too many occasions, leaving their attacks predictable. However, this season is going to be a completely new story with Sancho coming in.
Sancho could be given a start in place of Daniel James on the right flank for the Southampton vs United game after the player made his debut for the Red Devils when he came off the bench against Marcelo Bielsa’s side. On the left, with Rashford sidelined due to injury, Martial could feature after his brilliant performance in the last friendly match against Burnley where he scored a goal. But, Ole will most probably play Pogba on the flank as he has done so numerous times last season.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) August 20, 2021
Mason Greenwood will undoubtedly be the lone striker upfront leading the attack for United with Cavani absent as an alternative. The youngster already has 30 goals for the senior team and has shown great promise, managing to score a very calm and decisive goal against Leeds last week. His ability to play well with both feet and in all areas of the attacking positions makes him a deadly asset for United.
Predicted Lineup: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Lindelof, Shaw; McTominay, Fred; Pogba, Fernandes, Sancho; Greenwood.
Score Prediction: 3-0 in favour of Manchester United.
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